Millennium Post

Pained by undertrials languishing in jail despite bail: Delhi HC

NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court has said it is "pained" by undertrials languishing in Tihar Jail despite getting bail as they could not furnish a bond or surety due to poverty and issued a slew of directions to be followed by trial courts to ensure that such people get relief.

A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar said several Supreme Court verdicts have held that fundamental rights of even a prisoner accused of serious offences cannot be overlooked under any circumstance.
The high court further said that even the Law Commission had recommended that risk assessments be carried out of undertrial prisoners, who languish in jail as they cannot fulfil bail conditions, so that they can be released.
The directions of the court came on a PIL filed by advocate Ajay Verma who contended that hundreds of people were languishing in Tihar Jail here, despite grant of bail.
"We are extremely pained that despite clear law laid down on the subject by the Supreme Court as well as clear statutory provisions and Law Commission recommendations, 253 undertrial prisoners are still languishing in Tihar Jail despite grant of bail which has necessitated this order," the bench said. The bench said the trial court can then carry out a risk assessment of the undertrial and thereafter, modify the bail conditions, if required.

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